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Tips for Maintaining Your Refinished Cabinets

Tips for Maintaining Your Refinished Cabinets

October 2022

You just had your cabinets refinished, and they look as beautiful as if they were brand new. The process was more than worth it, but you certainly don’t want to have to do it again anytime soon. Then how can you maintain your good-as-new cabinets to keep them from needing another makeover in the near future? Here are 6 useful things you can easily do in daily life to protect your cabinets from damage and unnecessary wear. 

  1. When you’re cooking, turn on the extractor fan. This minimizes buildup on all of your kitchen surfaces. Smoke leaves a residue that can form into layers over time. It can be extremely hard to clean off once it’s built on. Additionally, the fan helps lower humidity in your kitchen air. Less humidity means less buildup too since condensation can settle on surfaces and act as an adhesive. The smoke residue and any other particles of dust, food, etc. will stick more readily to surfaces, including your lovely new cabinets. If your kitchen doesn’t have an extractor fan, consider opening windows if the weather permits, using a regular fan to keep the air moving, and possibly even buying a little dehumidifier.
  2. Never use abrasive cleaning pads or brushes on your cabinets. Even if you use the extractor fan every time you cook, you’ll still want to wipe down your cabinets fairly regularly, but you want to be gentle with them. Wood is far softer and more porous than most counters, bathroom surfaces, and other similar surfaces that you might need abrasion for. Use a soft rag, such as a microfiber cloth or a ratty cotton t-shirt you no longer use.
  3. Never use harsh chemicals on your cabinets. Cleaners like bleach, acetone, ammonia, or gel cleaners can damage or remove the finish on your cabinets and even permanently damage or stain the wood itself. You can use a gentle dish soap and damp rag instead. The soap should break down any oils and grease without damaging the finish.
  4. Don’t let the cabinets get wet! They can get damp, but you never want to soak them with a spray bottle, sprayer, or soaking rag. If your cabinet doors get wet, they’ll start to absorb water over time. This will in turn cause them to swell up and warp, weighing them down, which can damage or break the hinges, or cause them to fit poorly or unevenly in the cabinet frame
  5. Fix any nicks or scratches the cabinets get as soon as you notice them. This will keep them from further damage since nicks can allow moisture in past the finish and into the wood grain. You can ask whoever refinished your cabinets about how to treat nicks or even learn how to do so using online videos. But just like regular check-ups at the doctor’s office are beneficial, so is the consistent upkeep of your cabinets.

Naturally, you want to protect your investment. Cleaning and maintaining your kitchen cabinets may be the last thing on your mind, but the few minutes of work a week are worth it in the long run to keep your newly refinished cabinets looking fresh and shining. 

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